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Don’t know what to get those pesky Helms kids for Christmas? Wanna make sure they don’t get the same gift from Grampa Jesse? Marguerite Arnold and Romanus Wolter have just the thing.
Designed to demystify the icons, fashions, and vocabulary of gay life, “How to Get Your Pink Card” is a “straight-friendly” game that challenges children of all ages to better understand sexual orientation. The goal of the game, described as a cross between Trivial Pursuit and Life, is to be the first player to reach Nirvana by accruing 500 Pink Points. Players win and lose points, Arnold and Wolter explain, by answering trivia questions, taking lighthearted dares, and throwing attitude. On the road to Nirvana, players explore sundry aspects of gay culture and history before deciding whether to come out of the closet.
Arnold and Wolter conceived of the game about a year ago, while drinking coffee at the Pop Stop on 17th Street. Initially, they planned on writing a book. Then they realized a game would be a clever and nonthreatening way to get people talking about homosexuality. “The game brings it down to a human level,” Wolter says. Norrine Mack, a high-school counselor at Georgetown Day School, is already using the game in her classes and counseling sessions. “The game is a perfect tool to teach kids that being gay is OK,” Mack says.
“Pink Card,” which sells for $29.95, is available at Lambda Rising, Tower Records, Treasures, Outlook, Chuck & Dave’s in Takoma Park, the University of Maryland Book Store in College Park, and Unique in Alexandria.—Julie Wakefield